Twelve-year-old BFF’s Ginnie and Tillie want to be sisters. Tillie’s divorced mom plus Ginnie’s widowered dad could equal a lifetime of round-the-clock girl talk and slumber parties. Too bad Dad vowed to never marry again.
Ginnie and Tillie come up with the perfect scheme to change his mind: Operation Secret Sisters
Things get more complicated when Ginnie stumbles across her mom’s hidden journals. Ginnie can finally get to know the mother she doesn’t remember and her dad doesn’t talk about—if Dad doesn’t take them away.
Audiobook narrated by Hillary Straga
I wanted to love this because horses and young girls just go together, but didn’t find it very engaging at first! I would enjoy a little more imagery in the story! It was otherwise a fun story, as the plot progressed it drew me in!
I loved how well the author portrayed the girl’s feelings about the emotionally challenging situations they were in as girls who had lost a parent for different reasons. Yet it was a little disturbing to see how badly Ginnie behaved under stress and let her trust and good experiences fly out the window turning to extremely childish behavior when disappointed. I understand how hard this type of situation could be but want to see good behavior with clear consequences modeled in books my children read. I loved that it did show Ginnie coming around to a better understanding with her dad but I feel she was still justifying her’s and her brother’s one time defiance!
I asked my daughter who is almost the same age as Ginnie and Tillie what she thought about The Secret Sister’s Club. She told me she enjoyed the horse racing! Also, “When she [Ginnie] found those journals that was interesting. Her temper tantrums were somewhat interesting, but I’d prefer if she wouldn’t do them. She should learn self control and stop stomping away and kicking.”
I think my daughter was put off by Ginnie’s behavior in part because our family has been watching a video from Nicholeen Peck or Dr. Paul Jenkins (my toddler calls him the funny guy) each morning! These YouTube videos are helping us teach our children better ways to communicate, take responsibility for their emotions and actions, and to be responsible!
He nodded and then laughed. “That pretty much sums it up.”
Dad patted the swing seat and waited for her to scoot back. “You know Gin, as much as I’d like to be your friend, I need to be your dad first. Sometimes that means telling you ‘no’ and letting you be angry.”
If you have a child who needs to talk about difficult emotions, this would be a great book to use for starting a discussion. It also could be a fun way to discuss appropriate behavior with kids and young teens.
I love that the narrator of the audiobook uses different voices but would appreciate a little longer break when switching between narration and different characters. The grown ups seem to not have much range of emotions. The audio narration otherwise is okay for an audiobook and I feel most kids will enjoy it.
The Secret Sister’s Club was a sweet story about family relationships! I really enjoyed the small farm feel of this book. It reminded me of living for a short time on my grandparents ranch! I loved this part! I was intrigued by the mysteries introduced in the book. I plan to read several more novels in the Ginnie West Adventures series with my daughter to find out how these mysteries are resolved!
I received a free copy of this ebook from JustRead and a free copy of the audiobook from the author. All opinions are completely my own.
Get a copy of The Secret Sister’s Club:
* Alibris (paperback) * Amazon (link to ebook with paperback and audiobook also available) * Audiobooks (audiobook retailer) * Apple (audiobook) * Barnes & Noble (ebook) * Nook (audiobook) * Kobo (audiobook) * Walmart (audiobook) * Google Play (audiobook)
About the Author
When Monique isn’t writing, you can find her playing taxi driver to one or more of her 12 children, plotting her next novel, scrapbooking, or being the “Mamarazzi” at any number of child-oriented events.
Even though she realizes there will never be enough hours in any given day, Monique tries very hard to enjoy the journey that is her life. She shares it with a terrific husband, her dozen children and 3 in-law kids, eleven granddarlings, 5 cats, and many real and imaginary friends.
She is the author of five published books (and several unpublished ones) and is in two anthologies. You can find more about Monique and her works at: www.moniquebucheger.blogspot.com